Freedom of the Press



Freedom of the Press 2002

2002 Scores

Press Status

Partly Free

Press Freedom Score
(0 = best, 100 = worst)


Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)


Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)


An assassin was jailed for 25 years for killing a community journalist in January. Yet, death threats directed to two other journalists, break-ins at the homes of another two reporters, and the threat by the Lebanese ambassador to harm another journalist chilled the press, already worried by a "gag law" passed by parliament. Law 1728 made more difficult the securing of public records and left considerable discretion to officials in releasing information. Journalists argued that tracking corruption was severely hampered. In September, following actions by both houses of parliament, President Luis Gonzalez Macchi repealed Law 1728. Media independence is compromised by close relationships between the media and political parties, factions, and business interests.